WEB RELEASE: July 27, 2010
John E. Kramer (703) 682-9320
Knoxville, Tenn.—Even in the face of the current jobless recovery, one entrepreneur holds the power to create dozens of jobs and help other entrepreneurs to flourish. But too often, government policies stifle that success, leaving residents poorer as a result.
These are among the findings of a new report released today by the Institute for Justice, which showcases the power of one entrepreneur who fled Oklahoma’s anti-entrepreneur environment and found a more hospitable business climate Tennessee.
The report, “The Power of One Entrepreneur: Kim Powers Bridges, Funeral Home & Cemetery Owner,” documents the many ways in which entrepreneur Kim Powers Bridges not only helped put more than 100 people to work across nine states, but grew the fortunes of other aspiring entrepreneurs that came into her circle.
It is a story, however, that pits this entrepreneurially driven David against the government Goliath.
Bridges battled bureaucrats in her home state of Oklahoma where she wanted to sell caskets online. Unsuccessful in that legal fight, she grew a brick-and-mortar business in Tennessee and now has holdings in nine states from the Gulf Coast to New Mexico and Colorado. To read about the dramatic lengths this entrepreneur went to in order to recover and restore the remains of those entrusted to her after Hurricane Katrina hit her newly purchased Mississippi cemetery, visit: www.ij.org/Bridges.
Chip Mellor, president and general counsel of the Institute for Justice, which published the report and represented Bridges in her unsuccessful legal challenge against Oklahoma’s anti-competitive regulations, warned about the opportunity costs created by anti-entrepreneurial policies: “As this report documents, there are so many opportunities and such potential for better services than the public has ever known—all bottled up by regulations designed to keep entrepreneurs like Kim from innovating. These regulations do little but protect existing businesses from perfectly fair competition. As a result, consumers spend more than they have to, new services are stifled and the dreams of would-be entrepreneurs are dashed. The only ones who won were Oklahoma’s funeral directors and their political cronies. Kim’s success in Tennessee and eight other states demonstrates what Oklahoma lost out on, and what other states gain when they welcome entrepreneurs into the marketplace.”